Liverpool have suffered a setback in their title chase after losing and drawing their last two league games. Jurgen Klopp’s men would be looking to bounce back when they face Middlesbrough at Riverside Stadium on Wednesday’s midweek Premier League fixture.
Liverpool have faltered after a solid start to the season, but after the surprise 4-3 defeat to Bournemouth, they surrendered a 1-0 lead against West ham United on Sunday to draw 2-2. The Reds are third in the Premier League table behind Chelsea and Arsenal with 31 points from 15 games.
Middlesbrough, meanwhile, are hovering just above relegation zone. They are placed 16th, 15 games after their return to the top division. They have managed only one win in their last five matches but will take inspiration from Liverpool’s recent outcomes. The Boro have a good record against the big teams, frustrating Arsenal and Manchester City by playing out draws, and will look to shut out Liverpool as well.
Aitor Karanka will miss crucial players heading into the game. Star striker Alvaro Negredo has been ruled out with a hamstring injury. Uruguayan playmaker Gaston Ramirez is also sidelined with a foot injury.
Klopp, on the other hand, will miss the services of his star player Phillippe Coutinho who is out for at least two more weeks with an ankle injury. Daniel Sturridge is yet to recover from his calf problem while Oluwaseyi Ojo and Danny Ings are also out with back and knee injuries respectively.
Barragan; Chambers; Gibson; Fabio
Forshaw; Clayton; de Roon
Fischer; Rhodes; Stuani
Clyne; Lovren; Matip; Milner
Wijnaldum; Henderson; Lallana
Mane; Origi; Firmino
Stats from FourFourTwo:
- Middlesbrough’s last Premier League encounter with Liverpool ended in victory, winning 2-0 at the Riverside. Xabi Alonso scored an own goal with Tuncay Sanli scoring the other goal.
- In the last meeting in all competitions between Middlesbrough and Liverpool, the Merseyside outfit progressed from a League Cup tie 14-13 on penalties, after a 2-2 draw at Anfield.
- Liverpool haven’t won a Premier League game in Middlesbrough since March 2002, drawing four and losing three contests there since.
- In fact, Middlesbrough have conceded just once in their last seven home games against the Reds (Fernando Torres in January 2008).
- Middlesbrough have attempted only 38 shots on target in the Premier League this season; a league-low.
- In fact, Boro haven’t attempted more than four shots on target in any of their 15 Premier League games so far in 2016-17.
- Liverpool have scored the most goals (37), has the most shots in total (280) and attempted the most shots on target (101) in the Premier League so far this season.
- Adam Lallana has had a hand in nine Premier League goals this season in 13 appearances (four goals, five assists). Last season, he had a hand in 10 goals in 30 league apps (four goals, six assists).
- Divock Origi is the first Liverpool player to score in four successive games in all competitions for Liverpool since Daniel Sturridge in February 2014 (eight in a row).
- Liverpool lost their last Premier League away game (3-4 at Bournemouth) – they haven’t lost successive away games in the competition since December 2015.
Liverpool have been the team to beat this season until the Bournemouth game. Middlesbrough will miss key players in the attack and despite Liverpool’s current dismal form we expect the Reds to bounce back and claim all three points.
Final Predicted Score. Middlesbrough 0-2 Liverpool